The Online Resource for Massachusetts Poverty Law Advocates

DMR Eligibility Decision by H.O. Hudgins 7 30 07

Date: 
07/30/2007
Author: 
Hudgins

Outcome: Ineligible
Keyword: IQ

Hearing Officer: Marcia A. Hudgins
Counsel present for Appellant: No
Counsel present for DMR: John O. Mitchell
Appellant present: Yes
Hearing Officer decision on July 30, 2007
Appeal denied by Commissioner on September 6, 2007

Appellant is a 20 year old male.

The summary of the evidence is in the following table:

Year

Test (for ex., WISC-III, WAIS-III, ABAS-II)

Age

Score

Diagnosis in report

Verb.

Perf.

Full

1998

WISC-III

11

-

-

-

 

2004

WISC-III and WRAT-III

17

-

-

-

 

2007

WAIS-III

20

95

78

85

Tester notes that appellant's unique set of thinking and reasoning abilities and the large discrepancy between his verbal and performance scores makes his overall intellectual functioning difficult to summarize by the full scale IQ.

 

In 1998 at the age of 11, the appellant was evaluated using the WISC-III. The clinicians did not report composite or full scale scores because they believe that the scores will not useful since they mask the considerable variability in the appellant's profile. His performance was judged to span from the well below average to the above average range. Appellant has significant weaknesses in social situations and social reasoning and has a tendency toward internal distractibility. Appellant's profile was clearly within the spectrum of Pervasive Developmental Disorders (PDD), consistent with Asperger's disorder. The clinicians also concluded, based on parent report using the Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales, that the appellant's adaptive skills spanned from relative strengths in communication to relative weakness in daily living skills.

In 2004, the appellant was evaluated again at the age of 17 using the WISC-III and the WRAT-III. The tester did not report the appellant's scores, but noted that appellant's functioning was within the borderline range. The verbal score was at the median of the borderline range and his performance score was at the lower limit of the average range. On the WRAT-III, the appellant had average word decoding and spelling skills but below borderline ability in computational math skills.

The DMR expert, Dr. Parry, testified that while appellant was eligible for DMR services as a child based on his diagnosis of PDD, he was ineligible for DMR adult services. Dr. Perry further testified that his 2004 evaluation scores on the WAIS-III was a 76 on the full scale, 76 on the verbal, and 79 on the performance index, which was mid borderline. Since appellant scored in the mid 70s or higher on tests administered when he was 17 and younger, he did not meet the DMR definition of mental retardation.

The hearing officer concluded that even though the appellant has a number of deficits and is in need of support, he does not meet the definition of "mentally retarded" based on his IQ scores and therefore was not eligible for DMR support.

To save files, right click and choose 'Save Target As' or 'Save Link As'
File Attachment: 
AttachmentSize
PDF icon Hudgins decision 7-30-07 WO_0_0.pdf2.27 MB

Limit Offer